Research demonstrates that youth are at a relative disadvantage in terms of their trial related capacities compared to adults. This is a complex area of fitness assessment requiring an understanding of youth development, the nature of the Youth Court, the potential for developmental immaturity impacting on fitness, and the role of life history and family structure on both offending and engagement in Court processes. Dr Caleb Armstrong and Dr Davin Tan are both dual specialists in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Forensic Psychiatry.
Typically, reports are ordered by the Youth Court as per Section 333 of the Oranga Tamariki Act 1989, or by Youth Advocates.
Dr Caleb Armstrong has published research in the area of Youth Fitness to Stand Trial in New Zealand: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13218719.2015.1081314